The Paper Pit: “Brandish” #1 (Written Review) – NSFW

Please consider supporting Madhog on Patreon.

For the (old and ugly) video version of this review, click here.

Rusty Soul’s “Brandish” is a hardcore hentai fantasy manga starring a voluptuous succubus princess trying to have sex with a young hero, only to get usually raped, gang-banged, physically humiliated and/or blasted away in return.

It’s a comedy. Laugh with me.

Curiously enough, the first issue begins with the customary four-panel styled omake depicting chibi parodies of the major characters in a classic high school environment, with the heroine constantly trying to get into the new kid’s underwear – which isn’t all that different from the real story itself. If this was a different manga I could have probably interpreted the admittedly weird decision of putting the extra segment at the start instead of the end as a form of a clever foreshadowing device, basically stating that the actual fantasy portion was going to be read as the metaphorical representation of the girl’s hyperactively perverted mind, thus making horrible sense, actually. However, since this is just your average “run-of-the-mill” sexually exploitative comic where every poor excuse for a plot serves as a bafflingly contrived means to have the main character banged by something for several pages, a more thorough analysis would prove to be a massive waste of time.

Our protagonist is a nymphomaniac demon gal by the name of Twiska and she looks like a rejected character from “Monster Girl Quest.” As mentioned before, she’s after a little hero boy… more specifically, his junk and manly fluid. After breaking through a local inn and disposing of the servitude with sexual harassment and lacing techniques, she dresses up as a maid and tries to force herself to the ultra-generic cherry boy. Unfortunately for her, this particular brand of rejected “Dragon Quest” unnamed avatar (named Theo) happens to have a split personality that goes hay-ware every time he feels the presence of a demon, thus turning him into a women-hating, brutal rapist. Things go just as well as you might expect, at that point.

Sudden mood-shifting is a fairly typical staple in the hentai sub-genre, especially in the ones with a “comedic” setting. If a situation might feel light-hearted at first, it inevitably turns into purely uncomfortable or even downright despicable when the actual sex scenes are shoehorned in it. “Brandish” is a text-book example of such behaviour, as we get to enjoy our very unlikeable protagonist getting mercilessly raped by the even less likeable male for many, many pages. Of course, this being Japanese porn, she gets to like it after the umpteenth stomach-filling cum-shot and soul-crushing insult.

It might be worth stopping for a moment to point out a few inconsistencies here and there. For example, in one panel it is clearly shown the hero’s penis forcefully ripping through the succubus’ vagina as her pained expression of horror mixed with guilty pleasure stares right into the reader’s very soul, but in the next one said reproductive organ is magically teleported right in between her large, exposed breasts. Also, all the bodies throughout the entire manga seem to twist in bafflingly unnatural ways and the sheer amount of sperm is ludicrous to say the least. In other words, all rabid sex scenes are about as realistic as a slow-motion action sequence from a John Woo’s flick, and so exaggerated in their execution (not to mention, just gratuitously mean-spirited and nasty) that they pretty much fail at being arousing. However, I will give credit to Rusty Soul for a few bold quirks he would occasionally throw into the molten mix, especially that hilarious panel showing an entire galaxy inside of Twiska’s vagina.

The rest of the issue features other such situations: our “beloved” demon slut following the hero around, trying to possess his child-like form for which she has a lusty crush on, only to end up “Blasting off again!” at the end of every chapter by his demon-slaying persona – with thirty-men groupings, rains of semen, overplayed misogyny, explicit paedophilia and the occasional rape all happening in the middle. An origin story explaining how Twiska’s obsession towards Theo came to be is included as well. Let’s just say it involves full-fledged village men assaults, boyfriend-stealing shenanigans, bewilderingly placed girl-on-demon-girl action and, of course, attempted mass rape incited by “Our Hero.” The final two chapters available in this first issue are about Theo forming a party with a couple of sexy ladies. He would end up having wild, animal sex with the obligatory Lolita character while the other will experience the token “enlargement” of her clitoris thanks to Twiska’s magic.

You know, it’s funny to notice how the supposed “good” side of the hero isn’t really all that different from his dark side: he still ends up scoring with any woman he comes across, thus completely invalidating the necessity of a non-childlike persona. He should just change his name to Dick Saucer!!

Anyway, in the end “Brandish” is a dull and repetitive comic more than anything else. Once the basic formula for each and every story (with a few unnoticeable exceptions) is fully established, the constant display of hyper-realistic perversion gets old faster than you might think. Rusty Soul tries to keep things as nauseating as possible by adding d-girls and, from the second volume on, father-on-daughter incest but by the time those particularly disgusting gimmicks are introduced, the reader should feel already too alienated to be impressed. To put it bluntly, should you ever decide to give this piece of work a try, don’t expect Shakespeare’s own Dick Saucer whether to cum or not to cum inside your mouth…

I lost that metaphor somewhere along the line.